Gleanings

Part 1: The digital revolution

As people-centred organisations, co-operatives should be pioneers in the digital revolution. How has digital changed businesses over the past decade, plus what does it mean for co-operatives?

Comcast just doubled its broadband speeds in the entire state of Colorado — but without raising rates. Longmont, Colorado’s network take rate after one week of signing up subscribers exceeded its projections for the first year.

Libertarian scholar Roderick Long of Auburn University has argued that public (as opposed
to government) property is entirely legitimate:

It is not easy today to convey the intense belief of many activists and intellectuals in the ’30s concerning the necessity and inevitability of radical change. Among the best known are the different advocacies that swirled around Franklin Roosevelt’s liberal New Deal years.

Open Data Manchester is a community of developers, activists, artists, journalists and public sector employees who want to become more familiar with the tools, datasets and projects using open data. Its conference in October looked at how open data co-ops could make a difference, as well as how a mutual organisation could represent the interests of its members.

The creation of the Island Employee Cooperative isn’t just significant for its members—it also has historic value as the largest worker cooperative in Maine, and the second largest co-op in New England.

With Democratic Autonomy, youth councils, both under-18 and over-18, have emerged. Like the other councils, the youth councils have say and power in the carrying out of initiatives and projects, e.g., in the building and modifying of recreational sites and spaces.

Not so long ago, better jobs and stronger communities were separate visions, carried out separately: Unions organized workers at their workplaces. Community organizations focused on neighborhoods where people live when they’re not working.

The history of the commons—jointly owned land or other resources such as fisheries or forests set aside for public use—provides a useful context for current debates over sustainability and how we can act as “good ancestors.” In this book, Derek Wall considers the commons from antiquity to the present day, as an idea, an ecological space, an economic abstraction, and a management practice.

One of my most unforgettable experiences with WIEGO was spending a full day with a 70 year old woman waste picker cooperative leader from SEWA in Ahmedabad, India collecting waste - mainly paper, plastic items, iron and steel, wood, old cloth and glass bottles.

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